Six people can live in a 2 bedroom house. There is a loft, which pretends to be another bedroom. Mostly that's great, but sometimes we cannot be fooled. As you might imagine, we are very close! Being a homeschool family, we were already used to togetherness. But I believe, over these six months, we have become more patient with one another. We have to be. The only place to go if you need to be alone is outside. But as I came to sit outside in the early hours to type this, I was greeted by 3 cats and a dog. So "alone" is taking on a different meaning.
There have been some notable changes. For one, we are eating better. We would be considered isolated by city standards. So I often cook three times a day. Now that my dad has this fabulous garden in full swing and we can visit the farmers market, the quality of our food has improved. As I had hoped, the kids are trying new things because they have a hand in growing them. We are getting 4 fresh eggs each morning. A short drive on any given day will lead me to raw milk, fresh whole hog sausage, fresh berries.
We are working alot harder. And along with that comes a huge sense of satisfaction and usefulness. Chores have gone from unloading the dishwasher to cleaning up a fallen tree.
Education is not garnered only from books. We have to figure out what's eating the corn stalks and how to help a sick chicken. We are making organic butter and assisting the elderly in playing bingo.
We are learning what it means to depend on people in your community when you run into a new challenge. People really do want to help others. This is something I knew only as an ideal. But when the man I buy poultry from stops what he is doing to mix up antibiotics for our chickens, I know he is helping me because he wants to. The knowledge I am gaining every time I go in his store to buy feed is of much greater value than the price I am paying for that sack of chicken scratch. So if the first six months are an indication of our new life, I welcome the years to come.